Bangles and bracelets are pieces of jewelry that can elevate your look to bring class and elegance. Bracelets, however, are more popular for their flexibility and subtle look.
As humans, we are always in search of the next beauty trend that hit the market. Looking good is inevitably part of human nature. Jewelry remains to be the best thing worn by humans that fulfills this desire.
The market is full of different varieties of ornaments for both men and women with varied fashion tastes. Among the varieties in existence, bangles and bracelets are the most common pieces worn by both men and women. They are worn around the wrists. Bracelets can also be worn around the ankles.
Bangles and bracelets are jewelry pieces made from different types of materials such as wood, gold, platinum, pearls, silver, plastic, and leather.
Unfortunately, most people are unable to differentiate between them. Bangles are ring-shaped and worn around the wrist but lack a clasp. On the other hand, bracelets can be worn on the wrist and ankle and are made from flexible material held together by a clasp.
If you are unable to differentiate between bangles and bracelets and their types, then this article is for you. Keep reading to find out more.
What is a bangle?
A bangle is a ring-shaped bracelet ornament worn around the wrist. (Read the detailed post: What is a bangle? we explain history, pros, and cons)
The bangle is made from a rigid materials such as gold, wood, plastic, silver, platinum, and shells.
Unfortunately, it is extremely rigid and is not flexible, and lacks a clasp to open or close. The solid cylindrical bangle type and split cylindrical opening/closing bangle are among the types of bangles in existence.
Bangles can be distinguished by the type of embroidery or artifact made on them. This coupled with the rareness of the color can also increase the value of the bangle.
Normally, bangles are made from an inflexible material and worn around the wrist but in Indian cultures, bangles have evolved into different types used for different occasion’s e.g. Lakhs bangles and Kundan Kadhai.
In India, bangles are usually worn by women of all age groups. It is not uncommon to find all types of bangles in all women’s jewelry boxes.
Despite being fashion statement pieces, they hold more cultural symbolism in Indian cultures. Bangles are mostly worn by brides during wedding ceremonies and the type of work varies based on the region.
Green bangles are used to symbolize fertility, glass symbolizes hope, luck, and stability in marriage. Bangles can also be layered and matched with festive outfits.
The bangle dates back to as early as 2,600 BC in the Mohenjo-Daro settlements-present day Pakistan some 5,000 years ago from now.
Archeologists found evidence of people wearing bangles as fashion pieces through the discovery of an excavated status called the Dancing Girl.
The statue discovered was completely nude except for the arm which was decorated with bangles. This provided evidence of the bangles being part of human culture.
Bangles have also been discovered in many civilizations such as the Mayans, Roman, and Mauryan cultures, and are worn for different reasons.
In China, jade bangles are given to children as a form of protection. The ancient Chinese also had different types of bangles with intricate carvings of animals and nature. The name bangle is derived from the Indian word bangri which means a colored ornament.
Nowadays, bangles have become more popular among people and are worn for various reasons.
Different types of Bangle
There are a variety of different types of bangles in existence. The two basic types are the solid cylindrical and split cylindrical opening/closing bangles made from a variety of materials such as gold, wood, plastic, or silver. Below are the different types of bangles.
1. Kundan Bangles
The best type of traditional bangles you can go for is the Kundan Kadhai. This is an Indian type of bangle set worn with formal outfits. The Kundan is a soft and ethnic material that is hard to match with different types of jewelry.
They do not require too much layering as they are perfect jewelry pieces all on their own. You can pear a Kundan bangle with Kundan earrings and a choker as these jewelry sets go well together.
Kundan Kadhai bangles are set in gold and come in different sizes. If you love an ethnic piece of jewelry, then the Kundan Kadhai is perfect for you. This jewelry piece can be accessorized with formal wear.
2. Glass bangles
Glass bangles are beautiful, timeless, and classic statement pieces. Glass bangles are also very popular among people nowadays.
It is believed that the sound made by glass bangles is enough to drive negative energy away. People have also claimed to feel good vibrations when they look at glass bangle.
The good part is, that glass bangles can also be layered. In Indian culture, glass bangles are considered to be auspicious. Brides are required to wear glass bangles made of gold or any other metal.
They signify the hopes of the bride for her marriage, stability, and prosperity of the marriage. Glass bangles symbolize the long life of the husband and good fortune.
Breaking the glass bangle is considered a grave mistake that is inauspicious. Therefore, you want to avoid breaking them to avoid bad omens.
3. Precious stone bangles
For years precious gemstones have been incorporated into jewelry pieces to denote status, elegance, and value. Dating to ancient times, bangles were made from wood and shells.
Artisans discovered that they can be made from metals to increase their durability and value. Eventually, the metal bangles became exaggerated and were incorporated with precious gemstones like diamonds, rubies, and emeralds.
This type of bangles was worn only by the upper class as they were expensive for the commoners. Nowadays, bangles have been embellished with different gemstones to denote class, elegance, and glamor.
These types of bangles are worn as an alternative to gold and silver bangles and are available at different prices based on the gemstone they have.
Pros and cons of wearing Bangles
Nowadays, people are more curious to know the benefits of wearing bangles. The advantages of wearing bangles are discussed below.
Bangles are used to identify the origin of a person. Tribal bangles are worn by ethnic people and the type worn varies depending on the region is from. Indian brides wear glass bangles as they are auspicious.
Bangles are worn as a beauty statement. They enhance the look of a person. They can be used to accessorize different outfits to bring glamor and elegance.
Bangles can also be used for protection. Bangles made from iron can be used to hurt others in the case of an attack. Bangles have also been known to have health benefits. The wrist has acupressure points that are pressed to balance hormones. They also improve blood circulation.
Despite all these benefits, they also have major drawbacks such as:
- Skin damage. They can make you susceptible to allergic reactions which can damage your skin.
- Bangles can hurt you. Bangles made from glass can pierce you leading to blood loss
What is a bracelet?
A bracelet is a circular piece of jewelry made from flexible material and contains a clasp.
Bracelets can be made from gold, silver, or leather. They contain an enclosure clasp that makes wearing and removing easy.
Bracelets have been worn for centuries to accessorize outfits. Bracelets can be worn around the wrist or ankles depending on the type you have. They exhibit elegance and style when worn around the wrist.
The exact history of the origins of the bracelets is unknown but is believed to be of Egyptian origin about 5,000 years ago. Archeologists also discovered a large collection of jewelry in caves in Siberia.
The word bracelet originated from the French word brachialle which means arm ornament. Egyptians made bracelets from stone, bones, and wood. Greek soldiers also wore bracelets as a symbol of valor.
Nowadays, bracelets have been modernized and embellished with diamonds and precious gemstones to make valuable fashion statement pieces.
Different Types of Bracelets
Different types of bracelets are in existence. Below are the different types of bracelets.
1. Beaded bracelets
Beaded bracelets are a type of spiritual bracelet believed to have originated from Africa.
Archeologists discovered graves of chiefs and kings who were buried with beaded bracelets.
There are different types of beads used to make bracelets. Green mala beads represent prosperity and good fortune.
2. Charm bracelets
Cuff bracelets are a commonly worn type of bracelet that reflects your personality.
They are fitted with different types of charms based on preferences.
The charms can also be customized to suit your tastes.
Back then, bracelet charms were trinkets of friendship but nowadays, they have been reinvented with a modern twist.
Charm bracelets represent good luck. If you are looking for a bracelet for your birthstone, the charm bracelet is what you are looking for.
3. Tennis bracelets
Tennis bracelets are a type of bracelet embellished with precious gemstone on a metal chain. The most common stones are diamonds and gemstones. The stones are usually of the same size, color, and clarity.
Tennis bracelets are versatile and timeless classic jewelry piece that brings elegance to you. You can layer it with another bracelet for a fashion-forward look.
Pros and cons of wearing the bracelet
Even though jewelry elevates your look, it can also have drawbacks that need to be considered before purchase. The pros and cons are listed below.
- Enhance your look. Bracelets make you attractive in terms of appearance. Putting the on charms your wrist and makes you look and feel good.
- Preserve the cultural heritage. Bracelets are worn to symbolize cultural heritage. Wearing one can be a sign of cultural and religious obligation
- Support symbol. People can wear bracelets as a symbol of support for different organizations
Below are drawbacks associated with bracelets.
- Damage your skin. Materials such as copper can make you prone to allergic reactions and inflammation damaging your skin
- Bracelets made from precious and delicate metals can be easily damaged. They can also be shattered while taking off
Difference between bangles and bracelets
Bangles and bracelets are great fashion pieces for when you want to make a statement. What most people don’t realize is that they are different.
Bangles are circular bracelet ornaments made from materials such as gold, silver, wood, or plastic while bracelets are made from flexible material and fitted with closure clasps.
Bangles originated from the Indian word bangri which means colored ornaments while bracelets originated from Egypt and derived from the French word brachielle which means armlet.
Bangles and bracelets can be worn by women while men can only wear bracelets as they are easily adjustable, unlike bangles. Bracelets are versatile and flexible compared to very rigid bangles.
Bangles VS Bracelets – Which one is more popular?
When it comes to popularity, preference plays a major role. Most people prefer bracelets because of their versatility and flexibility.
It is easy to wear and remove a bracelet from your wrist because of the closure caps, unlike the bangle which is rigid and lacks a closure clasp.
If you are looking for a subtle piece of jewelry, we recommend the bracelet. Bracelets are soft, subtle, and not easily noticeable.
They can also be paired and matched with any outfit or different types of jewelry. The best part is, that you can layer your bracelet with other bracelets to give you a trendy vibe.
If you are a person who prefers comfort, bracelets are the perfect fit for you.
Bangles VS Bracelets – Which one is better for you?
Even though both are beautiful when worn with the right outfit, bracelets are considered the better fit.
They are flexible and versatile to give an elegant and trendy vibe to anyone who wears them.
Also, if you want to give your bracelet a personal touch, you can easily customize your bracelet with gemstones, birthstones, and beads.
If you are looking for class and traditional elegance, bracelets are the right fit for you. When worn by females, they enhance the charms and beauty of your wrist.
Bangles and bracelets are trendy fashion pieces that elevate your look. However, they are different based on their origin, flexibility, and who can wear them.
In Asian and African cultures bangles and bracelets are not just fashion pieces but are linked to cultural traditions.
If you are looking for jewelry pieces that can bring elegance and style to your look, then we recommend the bangles bracelets for different occasions.
Stephanie is a jewelry lover when she was a teenager. Her major was fashion design when she was in college. She is a jewelry designer at SOQ Jewelry and other design companies. Now she is also a writer for our website. She writes a lot of designs&brands posts with very actionable tips.